Max Verstappen suffers blow as the three-time world champion’s chief mechanic quits Red Bull after an ‘amazing 18

  • Lee Stevenson has been Red Bull’s chief mechanic for Verstappen’s world titles
  • Red Bull have won seven drivers’ championships during his time with the team 
  • Stevenson has announced he will be joining another Formula One team

Red Bull have since won the constructors’ title on six occasions, as well as seven driver’ championships.

The last three drivers titles have been won by Verstappen, with the Dutchman having joined the team in 2016

Three-time world champion Max Verstappen has suffered a blow after his chief mechanic announced he is leaving Red Bull to join a rival team.

Lee Stevenson announced on Instagram he will start work at another Formula One team from Monday when he flies out to the Japanese Grand Prix.

Stevenson has been a long-serving mechanic at Red Bull after joining the Milton Keynes based team back in 2006, one year after the team’s debut campaign.

Stevenson has been in the pit lane for all of Verstappen’s 56 Grand Prix victories.

‘You won’t be seeing any more posts from me from Red Bull, because today is my last day.

‘It’s been an amazing 18 years and all the things that I’ve managed to achieve here with the team have been absolutely incredible. From working on the first car, the RB2, and then the RB16B, obviously the RB19.

‘It’s been an incredible journey. I just want to say thanks to everyone here, it’s been an amazing time that I’ve had.

‘In 2006, when I started, I never thought we would win races, get poles, win championships – but we’ve managed to do all of that and it’s just been amazing. So yeah, onto the next chapter.

‘That chapter starts on Monday when I fly to Japan to start work with my new team at the other end of the pit lane. It’s going to be a massive challenge but one I am ready for.’

Stevenson had initially started at Red Bull as the team’s fourth mechanic, before becoming taking the front end role

He became the No 1 mechanic on Daniil Kvyat’s car in 2015 and took on the same role when Verstappen joined the team.

Stevenson revealed in 2020 that he had built a strong bond with the Dutch superstar.

‘You can relate to their excitement,’ he told the official Formula One website. ‘We have fun at the track and away from it – but Max knows 100 per cent that in the garage, we’ll get the job done and that he can trust us.’

The mechanic was among the key individuals who worked on Verstappen’s car when he crashed on the formation lap at the 2020 Hungarian Grand Prix.

Verstappen hailed the mechanics for ‘saving the day’ after he went on to finish second.

Stevenson was later promoted to become Red Bull’s chief mechanic.

Verstappen has enjoyed a strong start to the season with the reigning champion earning wins at the both the Bahrain and Saudi Arabian Grand Prixs.

Stevenson helped fix Verstappen's car after he crashed on the formation lap at the 2020 Hungarian Grand Prix before going on to secure a podium finish

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